Career Details

Principal (Elementary School)


Career Overview

A high school principal manages the entire operation of a high school including overseeing the teachers, staff, student learning, and the safety of the students.


A master’s degree in educational leadership or administration is generally required to obtain this position. In some districts, a specialist degree or doctorate may be required. A master's degree typically takes about two-three years to earn after first earning a four-year bachelor's degree. A specialist degree may take an additional one-two years after the master’s degree, while a doctorate may take an additional two-three years after the master's degree is earned, depending on the specific program.

Salary Expectations

Low End:
High End:
$55,000 /yr
$91,000 /yr
$122,000 /yr

Recommended Courses

  • Math - as much as possible!
  • English - as much as possible!
  • Public Speaking
  • Communication
  • Science - as much as possible, including psychology!
Future Outlook

The job outlook for this position looks good over the next 10 years, keeping in mind that geographical differences may exist.

Jobs: Check Available Jobs!

Work Environment

High school principals work in high schools! They may have to work year-round, unlike teachers who will likely get some time off in the summer.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook

Explore Careers, Labour Market Information, Government of Canada